Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Chiang Mai Pt 2 : Making Merit at the Country Temple

One of the reason I flew up to Chiang Mai was to celebrate my friend's birthday.We were in the same all girls school ages ago.This friend of mine, Pattirat is a business women in restaurant trade and she is very well known in the local industry. Pat planned for us 10 girls to stay in Chiang Mai for a couple of nights and then travel to the neighbouring Chiang Rai. We would also go to one country Buddhist Temple 40 minutes from the city to erect the ornamental part of the gable for the shrine hall hall at the temple.This ornamental part is call 'Cho-fah', paid for by Pat and her husband. More about Thai Temple architecture is here

To be able to dress up for the occasion, my friends took me to do dress shopping at Lao Jow Lane - quite famous among shoppers, both locals and visitors for fabric, clothing and craft shopping. I spent about 30 minutes and got a very nice entire Northern Thai outfit. This outfit consists of a long narrow skirt and a crop top - very fitting for this event.

At the temple the next day, we were greeted warmly by the locals on arrival. We sat in the main ordination hall for an hour or so while the monks were chanting. We chipped in some money for the temple before proceeding to the shrine hall for the Cho-fah ceremony. Building halls is believed to be one of the great merits you can do for the Buddhist temples. And to  finish off the halls, Cho-fahs need to be erected and connected to the gables. A lot of Chinese crackers and flowers were dispensed during the 15 minute ceremony.People here were so friendly and warm - we had been generously fed and profusely thanked (for the Cho-fah). Pat has done something meaningful for this small Buddhist community far from the city where money does not come by that easily. Nicely done, my friend.

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